Geneva. On July 9 and 10, several leaders of the Kurdish National Council in Syria (KNC) completed a workshop on International Humanitarian Law (IHL), including Ibrahim Barro, president of the Kurdish National Council in Syria and secretary of the Kurdish Union Party in Syria (Yekîtî), Saoud Almalla, chairman of the Kurdistan Democratic Party – Syria (PDK S), Faisal Youssef, chairman of the Kurdish Reform Movement – Syria, Nimat Dawud, chairman of the Kurdish Democratic Equality Party in Syria, Mustafa Sino, member of the political committee of the Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (el Partî), Taher Sfouk, chairman of the Kurdish Democratic Patriotic Party in Syria, Sulaiman Osso, board member of the Kurdish Union Party in Syria (Yekîtî) and Siamend Hajo, chairman of the Kurdish Future Movement in Syria, set up by the NGO Geneva Call in their headquarters.
The workshop covered legal and political questions in conflicts, including general rules for the protection of civilians in armed conflicts, the obligations of the Rojava Peshmerga forces to conduct IHL training and establish mechanisms for compliance and the humanitarian situation linked to the conflicts situations in Iraq and Syria. The focus was on rules for the protection of children, the prohibition of sexual violence and the elimination of gender discrimination, the ban of anti-personnel mines and humanitarian assistance.
In the final discussion, the humanitarian challenges and achievements of the KNC in the ongoing conflict in Syria in general and in the Kurdish areas in particular were addressed. Additionally, the KNC and Geneva Call agreed on a similar training for the KNC’s Legal Affairs Committee.
The training was realized by four Geneva Call staff, among them : Carolin Nehme (Legal Advisor), Anki Sjoeberg (Programme Director for Latin America and the Kurdish Region), and Mehmet Balci (Programme Director for the Middle East).
The workshop was implemented in collaboration between the Geneva Office of the Kurdish National Council in Syria, which is financed by ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen), and Geneva Call, a NGO which engages armed non-State actors on IHL.
Geneva Office of the Kurdish National Council in Syria